Thursday, October 23, 2008

a convergence of history, gold grills, and plaid: you trust me don'tcha?

A month ago today, Astronautalis dropped his new album, Pomegranate. I was supposed to write a review of it, and I fully intended to until I got distracted by a shiny object.

The truth is, there is nothing new I can add to the praise this album is garnering. For those fans of Andy’s, the album is a clear leap to the next it he recedes ever further from his overt/classic hip hop roots, and creates a sound that is at once new and familiar. It is both the sound that a dying steel town makes, and that of a reinvented southern beach town: it is story telling and lies, the grandiosity of the old alcoholic at the bar, or the one sitting on the front porch (to borrow two region-specific stereotypes) recalling lost opportunities and imagined slights. Sprinkled with a little west-coat ethos (or so I imagine it).

For this fan (and I can call myself no other such thing), the album is clearly the next step in his career. The one low point, is the eleventh track on the album, titled “The Most Important Track on the Album,” it is a span of disconcerting silence that comes off as arty and pretentious. Perhaps that is the point: at this juncture the listener is invited to fill the silence with their own stories and reflections...instead though, I just find myself pressing “forward” on the ’ol iPod.

Overall, I am only bummed that personal obligations kept me from checking out his set last night at Jackrabbits. And so, in lieu of a review, I sent Andy 10 Questions, and he was free to respond as he saw fit. They are brief, and really serve no purpose. Here’s hoping you enjoy them:

1. Last great book you read:
"winter's tale" by mark helprin

2. A nickname you have (not the one we all know):
dirt reynolds

3. Song with the highest play count in your iTunes:
"the story of my life"

4. Your browser's homepage is:

5. Two very trivial things you're very good at:
scrabble and cooking breakfast

6. Favorite site to waste time on:
partyends. com

7. First concert:
stone temple pilots, meat puppets, and jawbox @ george mason university

8. Worst job you've ever had:
working at the eckerd's at atlantic and 3rd

9. Complete this sentence:
the movie "crank" is the best thing since sliced bread.

10. Last YouTube video you watched twice:
the animated music video about George Washington

p.s. pictured: on the left: Andy Bothwell, on the right: Filip G. (taken from Andy’s myspace).

p.p.s. Pomegranate is available on iTunes.

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